Bullet points from chapters nineteen to twenty one
Odysseus talks to Penelope and although she in a dream like state seems to recognise him she still goes to sleep weeping and prays for an end to her misery
Meanwhile Odysseus spends a mainly sleepless night seeing yet more evidence of how little respect there is in the palace for his family or his memory
The pressure starts to build and the weapons are hidden from the suitors but they continue to laugh at Odysseus and his son and criticise the ‘tramp’ for staying around the palace
There are several servants who appear for the special holiday that are keen to express support for Odysseus even if it us unfashionable
Penelope ups the ante and brings out a bow and arrow that belonged to Odysseus and tells the suitors that the one that can fire the arrow accurately at a target will win her hand but they all fail to even pull the bow back
Odysseus asks for a go and despite protests gets the bow and pulls it back and this is the moment that we have all been waiting for when the suitors realise who they are dealing with
“Odysseus in one motion strung the bow.
Then slid his right hand down the cord and plucked it,
so the taut gut vibrating hummed and sang
a swallow’s note.
In the hushed hall it smote the suitors
and all their faces changed.”
The end comes tomorrow…